Synergy Middle School Newsletter

January Updates


I'm hoping between Infinite campus and Schoology messages I will be able to connect with more of you.

Remember you can always check your students Schoology page for updates, resources and information regarding middle school synergy programming. Please take a moment to glance through the summer information links at the end of the newsletter. There are some wonderful opportunities right here in Minnesota!

VOTE NOW-BEST IN STATE for Verizon App Challenge!

Congratulations to Mr. Albrecht's 6th Grade Advance Science students Lucas Warner, Jayde Butler, Luke Nelson, Preston Mack, Ty Sandell and Elizabeth Ginzburg! Their team won $5,000 in the Verizon Innovative App Challenge for creating the best app concept of all middle schools in MN!

Their app, "What’s in My Food," provides a safety net for those with allergies when eating or traveling out. Simply download the app, scan the picture of the universal food icon located next to menu item (choose the language conversion if reading a foreign menu) and the app will tell you what the ingredients are, alerting you of anything you have told that app you are allergic too.

Now help them win the nationwide App Challenge Fan Favorite award and $15,000 more. Text WHATSFOOD1 to 22333 by January 31. If we get the most votes, we win!

What's in My Food Commercial

First Annual History Bee!

7th grade Advanced History students participated in the first-ever, Hidden Oaks and Twin Oaks History Bee. The National History Bee is an academic competition for students that tests knowledge of a wide range of historical topics. In order to qualify for this round of competition, students completed a 50-question preliminary test. The top scoring students, shown in the photo, were invited to participate in the Bee. The remaining 10 students shown below now qualified to move on to the next stage of the competition, an online-qualifying exam to see if they will move on to a regional buzzer competition in Minneapolis.

Middle School Geography Bee

On Thursday, January 21st Twin Oaks hosted the Geography Bee for both Middle Schools. Each year thousands of schools in the US participate in the National Geographic Bee using materials prepared by the National Geographic Society. The contest is designed to inspire students to be curious about the world. Schools with students in grades four through eight are eligible for this entertaining and challenging competition. This years Prior-Lake Savage middle school 2016 winner is Grant Helgestad & Runner up, Myles Hill. Grant will now take the qualifying test to see if he will move on to the State level competition.

Perennial Math

Below are January's top students for the Perennial Math Competition for 6th and 7th graders. Congratulations to the students below!

Geography Fair Website Designs

Students in 8th Grade Advanced Global Studies have completed their Geography Fair website designs. Both Mr. Wabbe and Mrs. Welch's students were given a list of geographic topics to choose from. Groups collaborated, researched, studied, and created their very own website about a geographic topic.

Select teams of students will have the opportunity to participate in the Geography Fair that will take place at the Science Museum on Saturday, February 6, 2016 from 9:00-12:00pm. Here geographers will evaluate students website projects and will take part in special geography activities.

Summer Opportunities for Your Gifted Learner

Tyler Institute

These groups have a uniquely dynamic games-based format designed to engage intense and sensitive gifted students to develop executive functioning skills.


A full-day, two-week summer experience for rising 5th, 6th and 7th graders who are looking for a summer challenge. This is your chance to dive into your favorite topics – from acting to chemistry, mock trial to robotics, environmental studies to studio art. Students choose two classes (one morning, one afternoon.) Our small class size means your child receives individual attention by exceptional teachers who are engaging, inspiring and excited to be at MITY.

University of Minnesota Children's Math Programs

The U of M offers several math programs for children: UMTYMP as well as Saturday and summer enrichment opportunities, including the GEM Program (Girls Excel in Math).

Minnesota Summer Programs and Camps for High School Students and Middle School Students

This web site provides information about summer programs for middle school and high school students.

University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering

Summer camps and other enrichment events for kids ages 8-18 through the U of M College of Science and Engineering. Some offerings are free.

Macalester College Technology Camps is external)
iD Tech Camps held at Macalester College offer week-long technology classes such as game design for iPads, 3D game modding, web design, programming, and robotics. Expensive, but financial aid is available.

Science Museum of Minnesota is external)
The Science Museum of Minnesota offers Saturday and summer classes in science and technology.

St. Thomas University's Science, Technology & Engineering Camps is external)
For free, The University of St. Thomas offers week-long summer camps (STEPS – Science Technology & Engineering Preview) for students who completed sixth grade.

Northeast Metro 916 is external)
916 lists enrichment opportunities for students in arts and academics.

Minneapolis Star Tribune Summer Camps Guide is external)
Each spring the Star Tribune publishes a Summer Camp guide that lists a huge range of opportunities for kids.

SPAN Parent Meeting

Next Meeting

Thursday, Feb. 11th, 7pm

Westwood Media Center

Michele Tindal will speak on stress in gifted kids.

Your Partner in Education,

Ms. Missy Short

Synergy Program Coordinator

Prior Lake-Savage Area Schools

Hidden Oaks & Twin Oaks Middle Schools

HOMS (952) 226-0291 TOMS (952) 226-0535

“Every child deserves a champion: an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists they become the best they can possible be.”

- Rita Pierson-